Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has been issued summons for the fourth time by the Enforcement Directorate for questioning in the in the excise policy case. He has been asked to appear before the central probe agency on January 18.
The CM had cited Rajya Sabha elections, Republic Day celebrations and the Enforcement Directorate’s ‘non-disclosure’ and ‘non-response’ approach as reasons for not appearing for questioning before the investigating agency when called earlier.
In a letter addressed to the ED assistant director, Kejriwal had said the Election Commission of India had decided to hold the elections to the Rajya Sabha from the National Capital Territory of Delhi. The nominations started on Wednesday, and the voting will take place on January 19, he said.
The National Capital Territory of Delhi has been allocated three seats in the Rajya Sabha and the incumbents’ terms of office will expire on January 27, he said. Being the national convener of the Aam Aadmi Party, Kejriwal said he was held up with the run-up to the polls. “Being the Chief Minister of Delhi, I am also quite occupied in planning and preparations for several programmes and functions for the Republic Day…” he added.
This was the third time he had, through a letter, questioned the validity of the summons and skipped questioning. While referring to the two letters sent to the agency in the past, Kejriwal said it was a “matter of concern” that no response was received.
“It is a matter of concern that despite my comprehensive response(s) bringing to your notice critical dimensions and legal objections involved in issuing summons to me to appear ‘in person’ in your purported exercise of powers under Section 50 of Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 (PMLA), you have chosen not to respond,” he wrote.
In his previous responses, Kejriwal had called the summons “motivated” and alleged they were “issued for vexatious considerations”. He also asked in what capacity he was being summoned — “ as a witness or a suspect” — in relation to the Delhi excise policy case.